Out-of-Home Goes Online

Everything needs an acronym, so maybe we should call this "OOHO" -- the combination of out-of-home and online platforms, which have surged in popularity over the last year.

The most recent entrant is ON Networks, which announced earlier this week that it has created a multiscreen video distribution network reaching over 100 million viewers in the U.S. and Europe with syndicated TV shows and accompanying advertising. Claiming this is the largest such network ever built, ON says about two-thirds of the viewers are reached via the Web and one-third are offline, including out-of-home viewing as well as video-on-demand, IPTV, and mobile.

ON created the network by striking deals with over 50 big service providers, publishers, and content distributors, including Verizon, AT&T, iTunes, TiVo, DirecTV, and Buzzwire, which together form ON's AllScreen Syndication Network. This aggregation allows ON to reach viewers not only through TV and Web viewing, but also via mobile devices, in hotels, and by place-based video networks in business and retail. ON also tracks audience engagement and data for the various platforms.



Also this week, BuzzDash, an online polling site, has partnered with Transit TV to introduce a trivia game for bus passengers in Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Milwaukee and Orlando using its in-vehicle digital network. The daily feature will quiz riders about poll-based data derived from BuzzDash's online social polling forum. This opens up a wide range of topics, as BuzzDash claims to have poll data about "everything," including entertainment, sports, news and politics, business and finance, and "everything else." BuzzDash's segments will run every hour from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m., and twice an hour from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m., focusing on the key morning transit crowd.

Two months ago Captivate Network, which delivers news and information to thousands of digital screens in office building elevators, said it was launching a consumer news site. will be a site where viewers can learn more about the 15-second stories appearing on elevator screens. To coordinate programming and content across multiple platforms, Captivate has hired Deanna Murray, formerly director of programming for AOL, as director of content. Captivate is also planning to roll out marketing events in some of its big office building partners in top U.S. markets, having already launched the service in Toronto.

Another company, Access 360, targets adults ages 18-34 via three platforms: an in-store network, online, and mobile devices. Its in-store network reaches 14,000 retail locations, including Journeys, f.y.e., Game Crazy, Quiksilver, G by Guess, and Hollywood Video. Access 360 has created integrated marketing campaigns across these platforms, for clients including Cingular, Motorola, Macy's Lionsgate, Honda, Wrigley's and Samsung.

In August, Channel M, which delivers original entertainment content to 20,000 retail locations including Macy's and Blockbuster stores, said it would also create original content for a new live entertainment-themed portal operated by Washington Mutual, called Washington Mutual Live (no word if this deal survived WaMu's recent collapse, seizure, and sale by the federal government).

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